I don’t know Sunday. Sunday doesn’t know me. We have nothing to offer each other. Sunday doesn’t see anything in me. I don’t know how to exist on Sunday — but I can’t stop it from happening. I exist on Sunday, although it seems completely unnecessary.
However, if I forfeit a day of my week, every week for 52 weeks, every year for the rest of my life, I am agreeing to live less. I am agreeing to live less than my husband, my friends, my father-in-law, my neighbors. I am agreeing to less time spent alive because I have decided it’s okay for me to get less than they get. I succumb to an idea that they deserve more. “It’s okay, they deserve that day because they deserve a day just for them. I’m just an annoyance on that day anyway. That day is theirs. It belongs to them, not to me.” Where did they get the confidence to declare this day as theirs? Where did I get the sheepishness to concede my existence for a full day?
I’ve tried my hardest to be loud in my existence, in my own way. I’ve dyed my hair pink. I have filled my life with gay people or non-binary folks and art and theater and I write and I have performed. I’ve even faced off ‘bravely’ with homophobia or racism, and it’s only relegated me further away from Sunday. “We have to listen to you and look at you every other day of the week, but you don’t agree with Sunday. Let us have this day.” I can hear myself agreeing, even anticipating their argument. “I am not going to ruin their joy,” I say.
Why should I participate in football culture just because nearly every human being says I must? Let’s start with the players. They are all male. Many of them have been convicted and/or accused of rape, sexual assault, or domestic violence against women. Now, let’s move to the coaches and administrative peoples. They are men. The commentators are men. Let’s move to the messaging surrounding the sport. Masculinity is the name of the game. It is all about toughness and violence. Casualties of the violence on the field are never spoken of, yet they exist. They exist loudly in the medical world where football players have suffered such brain damage from so many concussions on the field their personalities change. They commit murder against others and murder against themselves. They try and tell their former colleagues and they donate their brains to science in anticipation of their demise.
The casualties exist loudly on college campuses, where young women, trying to participate in Sunday, are left with their faces smashed against a wall and penetration of their very core that they could not stop. They learn that they don’t know Sunday. Sunday doesn’t know them. Sunday discards them. Sunday penetrates them. They don’t participate in Sunday — Sunday participates in them without their consent.
To learn you don’t own your body and that it belongs to everyone else but you will most definitely lead you to concede your existence for a full day. You learn that to give a day to them is the best thing to do, anyway. You can deal with only six days. Or five, or four. Whatever they want, you’ll most likely accept, which is less and less of your own existence.
The problem with this is that you still have to exist on Sunday. It won’t have you, but you have to be somewhere, because as you’ve painfully learned, you can’t be nowhere. You can’t be nowhere as much as you wish you could be nowhere and nothing sometimes.
As far as I’m concerned, The Sunday Scaries don’t consist of the dread of Monday’s return to work. They don’t consist of the emptiness of a day meant for family when you have no family. They don’t consist of the loneliness of a day meant for couples when you are a single.
The Sunday Scaries could be describing an existence of which you cannot take a day off, though the world wishes you would.